Limerick has worst level of overcrowding as D-Day on 96 beds approaches

Fintan Walsh, Health Correspondent

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Fintan Walsh, Health Correspondent

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fintan.walsh@limerickleader.ie

Limerick has worst level of overcrowding as D-Day on 96 beds approaches

UNIVERSITY Hospital Limerick has the worst level of overcrowding in the country, new daily figures show. 

According to the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, there were 55 patients being treated on emergency department trolleys and on additional trolleys or beds in the wards this Thursday morning. 

The second highest rate of overcrowding was at Cork University Hospital, which 53 patients on trolleys. 

This is 24 hours before the Government reveals if it will be providing additional funding for the delivery of a 96 acute bed block at the Dooradoyle campus. 

The UL Hospitals Group has bidding for more investment into the project, after it received small amounts of funding for the design phase. 

In an interview with the media this week, Minister for Health Simon Harris was unable to confirm if funding was going to be provided for the new complex. 

“You will understand that I will be in awful big trouble if I start reading out what is or isn’t in the plan. But let me say this, I know the people of the Mid-West and the people of Limerick have been promised additional hospital beds for many, many years.

"In fact, they were promised that when various reconfigurations were put in place that the beds would come.

“The reconfiguration went ahead, the beds never came. I think that it’s absolutely vital that we show good faith here and that we deliver the beds.

"I still do not understand how Governments of the past decided to reduce bed capacity in this region. I am determined to increase it. The 96-bed project is a really important development for Limerick, and I am very hopeful that we will be able to deliver good news in relation to that,” he said. 

The Government’s 10-year masterplan will be announced this Friday.